By Mathew Ricchiazzi:
Political observers have been waiting for Carl Paladino’s opinion of Rob Astorino with great anticipation. Is the Westchester County Executive sufficiently conservative, whereas to convince Paladino not to run for Governor on the Conservative Party line? In an open memorandum to the State’s Republican Party, Paladino writes that “Rob Astorino is a good man and would be a good governor but he can’t win with the party in such disarray with systemic depression.”
The widely circulated memo reads as though Paladino intends to run for Governor, at one point offering to bring the Conservative Party to line A on the ballot – indicating that, should he run, he fully intends to win. The only way that he would choose not to run, he says, is if Ed Cox and Rob Astorino convince Republican legislators to vote Skelos and Kolb out of their leadership roles.
Paladino is upset with Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos for bringing the SAFE ACT to the floor for a vote, when he could have easily prevented it procedurally. Paladino alleges that Skelos “collaborated” with Cuomo to “strong arm” eight other Republican Senators to vote with him. In the eyes of hunters, second amendment advocates, and libertarians – Cuomo’s SAFE Act represents an egregious power grab that violates the constitution. Interestingly, he writes, “60th District Sen. Mark Grisanti and the others will resign or be voted out of office this year.”
Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb, Paladino is angered because “he never commented on Sheldon Silver’s criminality and he hasn’t commented on the current democrat sex scandals because he can’t. He instructed his caucus not to say anything derogatory about Silver.”
Paladino writes of cleaning up the Republican Party:
The Republican rank and file in upstate New York and Long Island are genuinely upset with statewide politics, party officials and their elected legislators who have sold them out on so many issues. They don’t remember anymore why they are registered as Republicans. They feel abandoned and are looking for a new home.”
“Skelos and Kolb made their own beds. Republicans owe them nothing. We need to clean up the Republican Party before we can successfully take on the Democrats.”
Calling for an “in your face opposition to the liberal government,” the former Republican gubernatorial nominee is not shy about laying out his campaign platform:
“As the rank and file watch their life savings deplete, their children leave the State to find jobs and the family fabric wither away, their legislators let Andrew Cuomo give them a patronage and special interest laden economic development plan, the SAFE Act and more gambling, to suck the last blood out of upstate, while denying them the economic opportunity of safe and regulated fracking.”
“Vague and half-hearted promises don’t work for the rank and file or for me. I’m on a mission. I don’t care what the money people or the party establishment wants.”
You can read Paladino’s full memo: www.facebook.com/cppaladino
You can also read fuller articulation of Paladino’s political strategy, from Turn Albany Upside Down, Chapter 1: Clean Up the Republican Party First.
Matthew Ricchiazzi holds an MBA in Finance and Private Equity, and a BS in Urban Planning, both from Cornell University. He founded Change Buffalo PAC to promote issues of new urbanism in Western New York. He can be reached at changebuffalo.org.